When a loved one is injured in an accident and can no longer take care of himself or herself, or that person gets to an age where they need more medical care than the family can provide at home, a nursing home is probably the only option. While this is often a tough decision, we hope that our loved one will be well cared for, as that is the point of going to a nursing home in the first place.
Unfortunately, that is not always the case, and some nursing home residents are the victims of negligent care, and in some cases, intentional abuse by staff, management, or other residents. When this happens to someone you care for, you find out what rights the victim has and what legal recourse may be available.As our Orlando nursing home injury lawyers can explain, one of the biggest issues is that the elder being abused may not know it, and if they do know it, they may be too scared to speak out. In some cases, we are dealing with skin breakdown, which is a very serious medical condition caused by laying bed for extended periods of time without the proper care. Proper care includes regularly moving the patients and making sure to properly bathe the patients. In some cases, the staff doesn’t care to do their jobs, and, in others, they are simply poorly trained and allow unnecessary injuries to occur.
This is not to say all nursing staff are poorly trained and do not care for their patients. In fact, the majority of nursing home employees do their best to care for the residents and make sure unnecessary illnesses and injury does not occur. However, even if there is only a single case of abuse or negligence at a particular nursing home in any given time period, that one case is too much for the victim and his or her family.
One thing that will help is to understand some facts about nursing home and elder abuse, so you can be on the lookout, as discussed in a recent news article from Forbes.
One thing to keep in mind is that, contrary to what many believe, an elderly nursing home resident can be physically abused without any obvious signs. One professor of gerontology quoted in the article said that a staff member could twist a patient’s arm, for example, and inflict considerable pain without leaving any marks. If the victim does have some bumps or bruises, family might just assume it was the result of taking blood thinners or simply from falling down, as is common with residents in nursing homes.
When a resident loses weight, even their doctor may just attribute that to aging, when in fact the person in charge of that resident is purposely withholding food. While these may seem like extreme examples, we have seen cases with these issues and many others over the years.
Another thing to keep in mind is that a staff member who is intentionally abusing a patient may warn that patient not to tell anyone or they will be harmed even more. This is often a very effective tactic. Therefore, if you notice signs of abuse, yet your loved one denies any such incident, do not just take it at face value and move on.
Call Freeman Injury Law — 1-800-561-7777 for a free appointment to discuss your rights. Now serving Orlando, West Palm Beach, Port St. Lucie and Fort Lauderdale.
6 Myths About Elder Abuse, June 14, 2017, Forbes
More Blog Entries:
Concussions, Brain Injuries From Falls in Nursing Homes Occurring at “Unprecedented” Rates, April 25, 2017, Nursing Home Fall Attorney Blog